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Last Chances - Chapter 16

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*Cameron's POV*

"Blood pressure's dropping!"
"Get an oxygen mask on her."
"We have to stop the blood. She's lost enough already."

The voices are all muffled and far away. My body's numb, I can't feel a thing and I'm waiting to get out of the darkness and see who they're talking about.

Am I in a hospital?
But how did I get here?

"Cameron? Cammy! Oh God! What happened to her!" Josh's voice is frantic as it reaches me through the haze and I frown, wondering why he sounds so panicked. The voices become muffled again and sighing, I drift off.

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*Daniel's POV*

Frowning, I head towards the front door as someone bangs on it. Yanking it open, I see Josh standing on the other side, looking furious.

Actually, that's putting it lightly.

He looks like he's about to kill someone.
"What did you do?" He asks, barely able to control the anger in his voice.
"What are you talking about?" I step back, intimidated.

If a fight breaks out, I know how it's going to go down. It won't be pretty... for me.
"Cameron," he bites out. "What. Did. You. Do?"
My eyes widen as I take in the worry etched in his face. "What happened?! Where is she?"
"At the hospital."
"WHAT?!" I exclaim, my blood running cold. "What happened?"
"Why don't you tell me."
"We..." Sighing, I look up at him, "we had a fight."
"I trusted you. I trusted you not to hurt her."
"I'm... I'm sorry! But what happened?"
"She was out walking in the rain and slipped. The doctors are saying she might have been struck by lightening."
I gasp, my breathing hitching up, "She's going to be fine right?"

All his anger drains from his body and I watch as his shoulders go limp, "They aren't saying anything. I hope so."
"What on Earth is going on here?" Mom asks, appearing in the hallway.
"I'm going to the hospital Mom."
"What?! Why?"
"Cameron's hurt."

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*Josh's POV*

I jump to my feet as the doctor comes out of her room. I'd sat by Cameron for an hour while waiting for Mom to come. I hadn't called her immediately because she'd been at work and the last thing I needed was her rushing over in this rain. Cameron had been unconscious because of the anesthesia but that was four hours ago.

She follows me as we approach the doctor.

"Mrs. Hayes, Josh," he nods at us, his face grave. "If I could have you step into my office please."
I glance at Daniel as we follow him, feeling bad for the boy.

He couldn't look more guilty if he had it tattooed to his forehead. He'd gone deathly pale after seeing Cameron and had said no more than two words.
"How is she?" Mom asks as soon as the office door closes behind us.

The doctor gestures towards the seat and Mom sits down. I remain standing behind her, my body taut with tension.

"Your daughter is going to be fine. The head injury was no more than a deep cut and it hasn't injured her brain. If she wakes up, she's going to need all the rest, she can get."
Mom nods, sighing with relief.
"IF she gets up?" I ask, my eyes darting over his face.

He sighs, removing his glasses and rubbing his eyes. "You have to keep in mind the scenario we've come to a conclusion to. She was reaching for the bench just as lightening struck. The metal transferred the electricity and she was shocked, otherwise she could have gotten up and been home safely. Now there is no damage that we can see, however it seems that Cameron has slipped into a coma."

Mom's intake of breath is loud and I squeeze her shoulders, trying to keep her calm.

"And?"
"I'm fairly certain that it's self induced. Normally patients wake up by now from the anesthesia. She must have had a lot on her mind, been under pressure. Her body's locked down and we just have to wait for her to wake up on her own. I'm so sorry."

"But how long?" Mom asks.
The doctor glances up at me and I shake my head, "she should be awake in a couple of days ma'am. Maybe even earlier. But all the scans and tests have revealed she's healthy."
"Okay," I watch as she slowly stands up, "thank you."

"Mom, why don't you go see her? I'll get something for you to eat."
She nods, shooting me a small smile and I watch as she makes her way to Cameron's room.
"Is there nothing you can do?" I ask, turning to the doctor, "isn't it true that a person can remain in a coma for years?"
He nods, "Yes, it is. But I don't think that's going to be the case with your sister. I'm sorry son, we're just going to have to wait and see."
"What about everything else? She's healthy right? And memory loss? Is there a chance.."
He shakes his head, looking confident, "Your sister is healthy. She's going to be fine."
"Okay. Thank you."

He nods and I turn, and walk down the hall towards the cafeteria to get something for Mom before I go see my baby sister.

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*Cameron's POV*

"Cameron," Josh's voice is low, but he isn't murmuring. It sounds full of pain and I frown, wondering what's made him sound so upset. "Please, if you can hear me, come back. I need you Cammy, it just isn't right. Mom's going frantic even though she's trying not to show it. Please."

I thrash against the binds holding me back. I can't open my eyes, they seem to be sealed shut, my body numb. It feels like I've got a cotton ball shoved down my throat. An insistent beeping starts and I hear my brother gasp.

Sighing, I let go of the shred of consciousness, too exhausted by my effort of trying.

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*Daniel's POV*

"Sweetheart, the doctors will immediately inform us if she wakes up," Mom says, looking at me, "you have to go to school, love."

I shake my head, my eyes immediately going over to her, "No Mom. I can't leave. Don't you get it? It's all my fault, if I hadn't fought with her, she'd have been home with us and none of this would have happened!"

"Darling, it isn't your fault. It's just one of those things."
I shake my head, "I'm not leaving this room."
"Daniel, it's been a week."
"Are you telling me to give up?"
"No," she shakes her head, and comes and stands beside me, running her fingers through my hair. "I'm telling you to keep living. I don't think Cameron would be happy seeing you like this. You haven't left her side even once."

I shake my head, my eyes resting on her pale face, "I owe her this much."
"But Dan-"
"Mom, please?" I look up at her and she sighs.
"Alright. I'll come after work with a change of clothes and food."
I nod, my eyes already wandering over to the bed as she kisses my forehead and leaves.

It's been 8 days since Cameron got admitted into the hospital and I haven't left her side once. Except for when her family wants to see her alone.

It's eating me up, seeing her so pale and unresponsive, knowing that it's my fault.

When Josh first spoke to her, her heart rate had increased significantly for a few moments and the doctors had hurried in, hoping that she was waking up. But it went back to normal less than two minutes later.

The only thing they could say was that she could most probably hear us. That hurt me more as I thought of her somehow feeling trapped and unable to wake up.

"Cammy," I take her hand, squeezing it gently, "I'm so sorry. I miss you so much. I miss your smile. Have I told you how beautiful it is? So sincere and true. Your eyes just light up when you smile. I miss jogging with you, the snow's starting to melt, you'd love the weather in the mornings now. Don't worry, I don't go anywhere, much less jogging without you. And I miss you teasing me. I miss your hugs, I miss how nothing can go unnoticed by you. And I'm sorry. I'm sorry, I pushed you away, I'm sorry, I hurt you. If it wasn't for me, you wouldn't be here and... and I'm not leaving you until you tell me to. Not anymore because I can deny it all I want, but I can't stay without you. You saved me when no one else could." I pause, blinking back my tears as I gaze at her beautiful face. "Everyone misses you. Anna's not the same person. She's lost all her liveliness, Dylan's worried sick. And Kyle...." I clear my throat, the scene flashing before my eyes, "he was all set to kill me that day."

I pause, my mind flashing back to a week ago, the day Cameron was admitted in.

"Yeah?" Josh answers his phone.

We're both sitting on chairs outside Cameron's room, waiting, while her Mom was inside. "No man. I'm at the hospital...." He pauses, listening to the response.

"Cameron's been admitted. She was out during the storm and she slipped and hurt her head.... She... she's slipped into a coma," he winces and I can only imagine Kyle's frantic response.
"No, the weather was fine when she left, I didn't know she'd be home early. She usually waits for the rain to pass," he sighs, standing up and walks down the hallway and continues the conversation.

When Kyle stalks into the hospital, Anna and I are the only ones sitting outside. He walks towards me and I stand up, glancing towards the hospital room door. Josh is still inside.

Before I realize what's happening, I'm pinned up against the wall.
"What the hell is your problem?"
Anna gasps, jumping up and trying to pull Kyle away from me.
"Kyle, let him go!"
I hear a door open and then Kyle's pulled off me. Rubbing my neck, I glance at Josh, who's frowning at his friend.
"It wasn't his fault Kyle. Leave it alone."
Anna pulls my hand away and surveys my neck as I stare at the hospital floor.

I glance around the hospital room. Every flat surface has been covered with flowers for Cameron. From friends, kids from school, family. We've been trying to keep it under wraps but news travels like a wildfire, so the word had gotten around that she had slipped while heading home.

Sighing, I glance down at my biology book. Anna had brought all my assignments when she was visiting this afternoon and I'd decided to at least start trying to go through them.

I stare at the page, mentally reading the words but not really getting them through. I think I fall asleep because the next thing I hear makes me jolt in my seat. The normal beeping sound I'd gotten used to as Cameron's heartbeat has become insistent.

Jumping to my feet, I glance at her and the machines before hurrying out.
"We need a doctor! Something's happening," Josh is off his chair and in the room in a flash, their Mom following as I call a nurse.

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*Josh's POV*

Mom and I stand and watch as the doctor and nurse check on Cameron.
"What's going on?" Mom asks, looking up at me.
Sliding an arm around her shoulder, I give it a squeeze, trying to reassure her.
"Don't worry."

But I can't help the worry that's apparent in my voice. I watch both the doctor's and nurse's expressions, but they're both concentrated on my sister.

When the nurse's expression relaxes, I look towards the doctor and try to see Cameron's face, but the doctor's blocking it.

His shoulders relax and he steps back, turning around and gesturing for us to come.
"I think it would be better if she saw familiar faces when she opens her eyes."
Mom gasps, turning to look at Cameron.
"Is she...?"
"I'm fairly certain Mrs. Hayes. She opened her eyes once just a moment ago. I'll be monitoring her progress from the next room."

He and the nurse leave, and Mom leans over the bed, looking straight down into her daughter's face.

I sit down on the chair, my eyes darting from the screen to my sister's face.

The last 12 days have been hell. I don't think I've ever been so on edge my whole entire life. I haven't slept a night since she's been admitted. My eyes on my phone the whole entire time, waiting for it to ring at any moment. I would have stayed at the hospital if it weren't for Mom. I've had to stay calm around her, trying not to get her too worried.

Cameron isn't just my annoying little sister that I love teasing. She means the world to me, literally. When I said there wasn't any other girl in my life, I meant it. I've seen what our father leaving has done to her, what being betrayed has done to her and I don't want her to be so vulnerable again.

I need her to be happy and herself.
"Cameron?" Mom's voice is soft and I lean forward, anxious.

I'm still scared where that fall may have affected her memory. Her eyes open and she blinks up at Mom for a moment.

"Mom?" Her voice is cracked and she winces, closing her eyes from the bright light.
Relief floods through me and I sit back, my hands shaking as I take in a deep breath.
"Oh, darling!" Mom leans forward and hugs her as best as she can.
I turn off one of the lights and Cameron opens her eyes, looking up at Mom.
"What happened?"
"You fell darling, you hit your head pretty hard."
"I did?"

A worried expression crosses Mom's face, "Yes, don't you remember?"
Cameron nods weakly. "I remember falling."
"Are you feeling alright?"
"Yes, Mom. Where's Josh?"

I step up towards the bed as Mom moves back, "Hey Cammy."
She turns her head slightly and her eyes move over my face, observant as usual, "Hey Joshy."
"You want some water?"

She nods gratefully and I reach for the glass by her bed. Pouring some water into it, I help her sit up and then hold the glass to her lips.
"Let me just go tell Daniel," Mom says as Cameron finishes drinking.
Her eyes widen as she watches Mom walk out, "What's happening?"
"Uh, you do know you were in a coma right?"
She frowns, "What?!"
"Yeah. Cameron, you've been out for 12 days," she gasps, staring at me and I nod, "you have no idea how worried we've been. You're feeling fine, right?"
She nods, "Yes, just a slight pain at the back of my head, but I'm fine."
"By any chance, did you hear any of us talking to you?"

She nods, her eyes cast down and I watch a slight pink blush spreading across her cheeks.
"Now, are you blushing because of something I said? Or Daniel?"
She glances up at me, "What is he doing here?"
"He's sorry. He feels guilty. And he really, really cares about you."
She nods, "Can I see him?"
"Of course! But I'm going to warn the both of you, if he does anything to hurt you, even if it's just an argument, I'm going to kill him, alright?"
She smiles, "I love you Josh."

Sighing, I lean over and bury her in a hug, "You have no idea how much I've missed hearing that!"

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*Cameron's POV*

As Josh leaves, I glance around the stark hospital room, only made colorful by the bouquets of flowers lined up along the floor opposite me.

I wonder who they're from. I can't believe I've been unconscious for 12 days!

I mean, I heard Josh talking to me asking me to come back. I heard Mom crying, Anna and Dylan's whispered conversations. I heard what Daniel told me quietly, obviously in tears.

I just thought... they were dreams.

As the door open, I glance towards it and see him walking in. My heart stops, I mean literally, and his eyes fly over to me as the machine stops beeping for a moment before continuing, only faster.

"Hey," Daniel says softly, walking towards me.
I shoot him a small smile as he sits down on the chair.
"How are you?"
I nod, "Better."
"I'm really sorry Cameron. I was being such an idiot, I don't know what was wrong with me. If I hadn't acted like that, you wouldn't even be here."
"It's okay."
"No," he shakes his head, his face full of guilt, "it isn't. I cannot believe I beha-"
"Daniel," I interrupt him, smiling slightly, "it isn't your fault."
"YES! It completely is! I was such a dick!"

I chuckle, surprised at his choice of wording. Since when does Daniel say stuff like this. My eyes fall on a bouquet of bluebells standing proudly opposite my bed and I smile.
"It isn't. And I heard you, so I should know."

I glance at him and see his eyes on me, searching my face. I want to reach out and run my fingers through his blond locks, but I can't find the strength to reach so far as I just hold my hand out.

Daniel takes it, squeezing my fingers gently.
"You heard? When? I mean, yeah," he finishes awkwardly.
"Yeah, I did. You did say all that meaning for me to hear right?"

I see him blush slightly and smile, "Yeah, but I didn't know if you would. I hope you did."
"I get what you did," I say after a moment. "I mean we were both hurt and scared to love you know? So I understand why you tried to push me away."
"But it wasn't right."
I turn my face towards him, nodding. "Yeah, but I get it. And in a way, that was your way of showing you cared."
"But Cam...." He pauses and I look at him, our gazes locked.
"Yeah?" I ask softly.

He stares at me a moment before shaking his head, "You have no idea how worried I've been."
I smile, "I think I might be able to guess."
He chuckles, "What exactly did you hear again?"

I blink hard, trying to ignore the pain in my head, "Just the usual you know. I miss you, I need you, blah... blah... blah."
He laughs, "That's the usual?"
I grin, "Hey, admit it, it gets a little old."

Daniel raises an eyebrow, "Really?"
"Yeah. But then it's about whose heart, it comes straight from."
"And?" He leans in closer, his face inches from mine.
"And nothing. I missed you too."

His smile is gentle as he leans in and kisses my cheek.
"I swear Cameron, I'll make it up to you. I promise you that."
"I have no doubt," I murmur as he pulls back and looks up at me.

My eyes flutter close as he reaches up and runs his fingers through my hair before trailing one down my cheek.

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Not as long as the last... but I hope you enjoyed! Next chapter is going to be more Daniel+Cameron, Kyle will make an appearance I promise and drama, drama! Enjoy!

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Published: 8/8/2013
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